Be honest with yourself (because nobody can see or judge you) – do you do any of these faux pas? If so, don’t be hard on yourself! Many (and I mean MANY) of us do, and it’s nothing that can’t be redirected or improved.

During the winter months it’s more critical than ever, to pay attention to our skincare habits and routines. Why? Because the blistering cold, the biting winds and chills, the snow, the rain, they can cause serious dryness, flakiness, redness, inflammation and in some cases even more serious skin conditions.

If you want your skin (not just your mood) to be happy and glowing, then this is the blog for you. Consider avoiding these mistakes (like you would avoid the plague) and you’ll be the educated, wintertime skincare guru we know you are (or want to be).


MISTAKE #1: Using The Same Cleanser You Did 3 Months Ago.

And/or… washing the skin too aggressively.

In dryer/cooler air, your skin will benefit most from a cream-based cleanser, which is more likely to hydrate. Being gentler will also help protect skin’s natural moisture barrier and keep it from drying. Expecting a lightweight/foaming cleanser used in the summertime to do the heavy-lifting moisturizing (which ALL skin types need more of in the winter), is the first and most common mistake around.


MISTAKE #2: Over-Exfoliating.

Conventional wisdom had us thinking that because skin gets drier this time of year we should exfoliate more often, as to remove the flakiness. But this is when the skin starts especially getting stripped of water and moisture, so we have to be extra careful with it and treat it as we would sensitive skin. And what’s one of the first things you don’t do with sensitive skin? You don’t over-exfoliate it. This time of year, excessive exfoliating will only sensitize the skin. Stick to once-twice per week (tops), and consider gentle (ideally enzymatic) exfoliators.


MISTAKE #3: Skipping The SPF Because… It’s Wintertime & We Don’t Need It.

UVs are here year-round, on rainy and cloudy days as well and they’re sneaky and able to penetrate through clothing and windows as well, meaning that there’s never any downtime and you should apply sunscreen on a daily basis, and even if you’re staying home.

And if you want to protect from UVAs and UVB rays, air pollution, AND blue light damage (from the smartphone, TV, laptop, tablet, and anything else you have around), try the 4-IN-1 Concealer SPF 30. It’s an eye cream in a tube, formulated with powerful active ingredients at their researched levels of performance + broad spectrum (mineral sunscreen) SPF 30, pollution and blue light protection. It glides on like a dream, and it’s like nothing you’ve ever experienced before.


MISTAKE #4: Taking Hot Baths & Showers.

I’m struggling hard with this one, won’t lie! Not for my face, because hot water never touches this face, but for the rest of the body. Fact is though that hot water does a tremendous job at removing natural oils from the skin, contributing greatly to dryness and dehydration. First step here is to go cooler on the temperature, then go in with your face serum and body lotion while the skin is still damp. That’s the big trick to locking in moisture and preventing evaporation, which is very common in the winter months. P.S.: This applies to the water we’re washing our hands with, too.


MISTAKE #5: Using Products with Fragrance & Alcohols.

K, first thing: Not all alcohols in formulas are bad. There are certain types known as fatty alcohols, which are especially beneficial for skin. Examples you’ll see on ingredient labels include cetyl alcohol, stearyl alcohol, and cetearyl alcohol – most of them serving as product stabilizers, texture enhancers, emollients and emulsifiers.

However - if you see SD alcohol, denatured alcohol or (less often but still possible) isopropyl alcohol in formulas, especially in the first 5-6 ingredients on the label list, just know they run the risk of drying the skin, potentially disrupting the skin barrier and even making breakouts worse. 

It’s also worth mentioning that no matter the type of alcohol, if alcohol is the main ingredient in a skin care product, that IS a problem!

In terms of fragrance, while it may appear as just one ingredient on the label list, fragrance can be made up of HUNDREDS of different ingredients (whilst only “fragrance” is listed on the label). Fragrance (synthetic as well as naturally derived) is a leading source of sensitivity in cosmetics and we highly recommend avoiding it, especially this time of year.

Worth knowing that VREA Cosmetics products are Fragrance-Free (and they don’t smell like they could use fragrance either, you know what I mean?!)


MISTAKE #6: Not Switching To A Thicker Moisturizer.

In cooler temperatures moisture is a MUST, regardless of skin type. That includes those of us with acne-prone or oily skin as well. If you are prone to breakouts, use products labeled non-acnegenic or non-comedogenic. If you have oily skin, the key ingredients will be hydrating ones (i.e. Hyaluronic Acid, Glycerin, Urea, Seaweed, Sodium PCA, Butylene Glycol, etc.)

Now more than ever, you skin will need a more rich/moisture-focused moisturizer.


MISTAKE #7: Not Paying Attention To What You Wear.

Cozy scarves and beanies are go-tos, but did you know that many knitted or other winter fabrics can cause skin irritation? To avoid this, consider wearing items made from breathable materials like cotton, linen or polyester, and layering them instead.

And P.S. If something is touching your face today, it should be washed before having it touch your face again tomorrow. We don’t often think of the frequency with which we wash the winter accessories, but we should! 


MISTAKE #8: Ignoring The Feet.

When it gets cold outside, it seems that more often the lips and hands get a lot of love (as they should), whilst nobody seems to care about the feet. Aww…

An amazing thing to do is: apply a thick moisturizer (think Vaseline, Aquaphor, etc.) then put on a pair of socks to trap in that moisture. It's a dreamy duo. And if you want to pamper yourself, exfoliate and try a foot mask beforehand moisturizing too.


MISTAKE #9: Forgetting About The Eyes.

In the last minute, your eyes have made around 240 quick movements called “saccades” (French for “jolts”) and in your waking hours today, you’ll likely make around 200,000 of these movements.

Reason for sharing this is because constant blinking, squinting and movement, adds weight to an area that is already the most fragile and most prone to dryness and damage, plus the first to show signs of aging. Let’s not forget that our eyes keep moving during sleep as well (yikes!).

While some folks argue that eye creams are just “overpriced moisturizers”, it’s important to know that many eye creams are formulated specifically to adapt to this area and tend to be a little thicker. Think of it this way: body lotion could have the same ingredients as a facial moisturizer (at label level), but what would that body lotion do if applied onto the face? Over a period of time, it would likely wreak havoc for many of us. From irritation, to pore-clogging issues like breakouts, to milia.

If you’re not using an eye product in the warm months, you most definitely should consider using one in the cold months.

Our favorite thing to do this time of year, is use the Eye Goals eye masks, squeeze leftover formula from the pouch and apply that to the brow bone, the 11s (those vertical lines between the eyebrows), lip lines and the rest on the neck and chest. Live your life for about 15 minutes (they're non-slip, so you can literally do whatever you want or need to), then remove them. Tap excess product gently into the skin, and follow with an eye cream. Especially for those of us with dry skin and/or dry eye area, this will be legendary!


MISTAKE #10: Not Using A Humidifier Because… It Sounds Like A Gimmick.

Heating systems can literally suck the life (aka humidity) out of air, making it even drier, and your skin will suffer as a result. Take care of your skin by addingmore moisture in the home with a humidifier. Also consider moisture boosting plants as well (like Areca palm, Rubber plant and Peace lily). The more moisture in the air, the more that air will share its moisture with your skin.


Thanks for being here and checking out the post. VREA loves you (and your beautiful skin)!

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